As the population of America is graying, society is evolving and eliminating many of the support structures that historically had allowed seniors to reside in their own homes until their final days. Fifty years ago, women were typically relied upon to stay at home and take care of an elderly relative. In today’s world, women work, the family size has contracted and many adult children live a considerable distance from their parents. Many families find themselves part of the “sandwich generation,” having to simultaneously care for their parents and their own children, often while both spouses work full-time. This is a stressful situation, often aggravated by a life-changing event such as a recent hospital stay or medical diagnosis that has impacted families’ inter-connected lives. People age 65 years and older represent 13% of the US population but account for over 35% of healthcare expenditures and 50% of all acute-care hospital occupancies.
Due to this challenge, Non-Medical Home Care has emerged as a creative and often vital solution to the predicament. Through this affordable and flexible approach, America’s seniors are given the opportunity to preserve their dignity, safety, independence and happiness in the privacy of their own homes. It provides reassurance to seniors while simultaneously providing peace of mind to their families. Although Non-Medical Home Care companies generally offer the most cost-effective means of providing these services, most of the population is unfamiliar with this innovative concept and the potential benefits it offers.
Non-Medical Home Care companies offer a wide range of services such as companionship, meal preparation, assistance with personal care needs, light housekeeping, grocery shopping, medication reminders and transportation to doctor appointments. Some individuals require minimal assistance while others may need around-the-clock care. Services can be tailored to fit the client’s individual needs and are also available to those in assisted living, skilled nursing and independent retirement communities.
The industry is still in its infancy but use of such services is expected to grow by 25 percent annually for the foreseeable future, fueled in large part by the powerful demographics of the Baby Boomer Generation. The population of people over 85 is the fastest growing segment of the population. The objective of Non-Medical Home Care is not to make seniors dependent on the service but rather to offer them more independence to enjoy the other areas of life.